Romans 8:28-31 (NIV)

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.  29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.  31 What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?   

Psalm 126:6 (NIV)

6 He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.   

DEVOTION – Dan Nelson (North Carolina)

Michael grew up in a close, loving family; yet, in high school he began using drugs.  After struggling for some time with addiction, he had recently completed rehabilitation and seemed to be on the right track.  Then Michael showed signs of a relapse.  One afternoon, he went downstairs and turned on his music.  Michael was later found dead; he was 23.  Those who knew him were heartbroken by this senseless loss.

The service celebrating Michael’s life was packed.  Many of those attending were youth who were with him during his last rehab;  they had believed his would be a success story.  At the graveside service, I spoke with a mother whose s   on was struggling with addiction; her son was devastated by Michael’s death.  He expressed it this way:  “Only with God’s help can I ever be free from this!”

With this in mind, we turn to scripture for comfort.  Psalm 126:6 reminds us that in times of grief, God will provide us with strength, joy, and healing – allowing us to bear fruit for God’s kingdom.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Only God can give us an abundant life.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, help us to pray believing that even through tears and broken hearts, all things come together for good for those who love you.  Amen.

PRAYER FOCUS: THOSE SEEKING FREEDOM FROM SUBSTANCE ABUSE

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